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Nusa Island Retreat

Thursday, May 20, 2004
Sorrel takes you to a place you probably have never heard of … but one you'll simply never forget.

Papua New Guinea is entirely in the tropics, with the obvious accompaniments of rainforests, mountains and wild rivers and a year-round warm and humid climate.

Not as well known is what it has to offer in the crystal clear waters surrounding it — an amazing variety of unspoiled dive sites with coral reefs, WWII ship and aircraft wrecks, sunken live volcanoes and marine life it there to be explored.

New Ireland is just two degrees south of the equator and is a most beautiful and tranquil island. Kavieng is on its tip and the area offers great surfing, plus reef and wreck diving, with hundreds of coral atolls, reefs and quays.

Kavieng has nine reef breaks which means consistently good surfing conditions in the season from November to April. The safe conditions attract families.

A few years ago two Australians who were enjoying a holiday in Kavieng were approached by some locals about starting a business. Nusa Island Retreat on Nusa Lik was the result and now the two communities work together.

Nick, Shaun and Shannon Keane and Liz Hutchinson are the owners and they have initiated three community development projects addressing health, sanitation and education.

The Retreat is just a two minute boat ride or 400m swim in beautiful water from Kavieng and sits on 12ha.

Accommodation is seven high-quality, island-style bungalows, most on the water's edge with beautiful views, and accommodating four to five people. They are built from bush material and have basic furniture, linen, towels, mosquito netting, ceiling fans, balcony lanterns and drinking water. Limited numbers ensures there is a relaxed atmosphere, with 10 to 15 being the average number of guests at any one time.

The main building has iron roofing for water collection, sand floors and walls made of woven blinds. It houses the restaurant, kitchen, licensed bar and activities such as table tennis and board games. There is a television, but the owners say most people are just happy chatting and enjoying the ambience. The menu is innovative and they take full advantage of the plentiful local seafood, fruit and vegetables. Guests can choose to eat at their own table or with others.

Activities are almost limitless. You can snorkel, kayak, fish, surf, nature walk, bike ride, shark call, canoe paddle, sail into the sunset, hobie-cat sail or receive a diploma in the island's specialty — relaxing on the beach. Snorkel, dive and fishing gear can be hired.

To enjoy the area in style, Tiki Turtle Eco Adventures are the people to see. Anthony Turner is an Australian who has discovered the beauty of the Kavieng area, and he and his partner have some excellent ways to show it to you.

Luxury overnight cruising on a 12 metre Polynesian catamaran with crew, meals, shower, toilet and refrigeration is an unforgettable experience. You can fish, snorkel or just be totally relaxed, pampered and enjoy the surroundings.

You can combine kayaking and camping with Tiki Turtle. They have guided double and single ocean-going kayak tours which include meals and camping accommodation.

If you prefer to stay ashore, try a guided cycling trip. They have good solid bikes and you have the opportunity to stay in traditional guesthouses and enjoy delicious meals cooked in the local way.

Locals are Melanesian and they are peaceful, friendly and relaxed. English is widely spoken and understood.


The tip of New Ireland in Papua New Guinea.


Niugini Holidays has a six night package flying Air Niugini starting at $1218 from Brisbane and $1276 from Sydney per person, twin share. Accommodation and tax are included.
Please note prices are valid at time of filming.

More information

Nusa Island Retreat
Box 305 PO Kavieng, N.I.P
Papua New Guinea
Ph: 0011 675 984 2247
Fax: 0011 675 984 2404
Niugini HolidaysPh: 1300 850 020
Tiki Turtle Eco Adventures
Ph: 0011 675 984 1301

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